Developing an empowerment approach to managing utility bills

Part of your role as Community Sponsor will be supporting the refugee family to manage and budget for their utility bills independently. Navigating an array of options available to UK consumers can be difficult for people who speak English fluently, let alone a newly arrived family. In this resource we highlight some of the key…

Managing financial disappointment

For most refugees, integration and financial security are interlinked, especially when they are resettled to a relatively wealthy country like the UK. Refugees will have also heard rumours from their networks about the UK and other countries that may lead them to believe that resettlement equates to not having to worry about money. Many Groups…

Sources of funding for training and education

For some refugees going back to the profession they held before they arrived in the UK are likely to require some additional training or getting a qualification.  Carrying out the role they used to do may be very difficult if they don’t speak English and re-training is the best way to increase chances of finding…

Supporting refugees affected by the benefit cap

The benefit cap is a limit on the total amount of welfare benefits each family or individual receives. The benefit cap affects Universal Credit as well as Child Benefit (if the family you support still gets legacy benefits you can find list of all affected benefits here). As of 20 October 2021, the benefit cap…

Welcome Pack

As part of your application form, you will be asked to prepare a Welcome Pack for the family. Below is a list of suggested documents you could include. You may wish to add, remove or amend the title of any of these documents – it’s really about what you as a group would like to…

Fundraising

As part of your approval to be a community sponsor, you will need to raise £9,000 to cover any of the project expenses. This resource aims to provide ideas and approaches to help you raise money to support the resettled family you will be welcoming. As you produce your resettlement plan, you’ll be able to build a…

Interpreting options

There are various different ways you can work with interpreters. You could work with paid, volunteer or bilingual volunteers (who work with the family in their own language, and also interpret when required). They could carry out their interpreting either face to face or over the phone. Whichever option you choose, make sure that the interpreter you work…

Introduction to Universal Credit

Note: Universal Credit will be paid from the day the application is fully submitted. The first payment will be made at least 5 weeks from the date the application is fully submitted. Make sure you help the family you welcomed to apply as soon as possible after the arrival to ensure they don’t loose out…

Making benefits calculations

Both for the sake of your Group and the family you will support, it is important to ensure that the property you find will be financially viable – that the family will be able to pay their rent and the Group won’t have to contribute beyond expected and agreed top up. We developed this resource…

Making loans to the family you support

Many Community Sponsorship Groups have established a process by which they will make an interest-free loan of funds to the family they are supporting.  Having additional money to support a specific ambition or to fill a gap can be empowering to a family who have been resettled in the UK, but it’s important to think…

Managing Risk

We don’t want to pretend that Community Sponsorship comes without challenges.  Everything you do is about working with people, and this isn’t always an easy task! Reset are on hand to help you navigate challenges as they happen, however, groups may find it useful whilst they are planning their applications to consider how they will…

Opening a bank account

The resettled family you support will be required to register with the Jobcentre Plus within three working days of arrival in order to claim their benefits. In order to receive benefits, refugees must have a UK bank account. However, newly arrived refugees often lack the specific documents required to open a bank account such as proof of…

Other benefit entitlements

There are a number of benefits that are not included in Universal Credit. Your group will have to assist the refugee family to apply for those separately. Below is a list of most common benefits not included in Universal Credit. Some of these, like Council Tax Support will apply to pretty much every family, others…

Record keeping

When you are supporting a refugee family to build a life in the UK, your Group will need to keep records on some of the work that you carry out to support them. It’s important to find a system that is manageable and appropriate for the task at hand. This resource suggests which records to…

Setting your budget

As part of your resettlement plan you will need to design a budget. This is because you need to have an idea of the costs involved in supporting a resettled family when you are deciding what kind of support your group can offer. Having an idea of the costs will also help you to plan your…